Modern technology provides a real opportunity for businesses to improve access to education for disadvantaged children across the world.
Corporate Social Responsibility Europe is a network dedicated to helping businesses innovate and create more sustainable and inclusive strategies. One of its reports states that in Africa, for example, e-learning is “the best possible solution for democratising higher education…and ensuring that access to quality higher education is not limited to infrastructure or tools.”
Access to the internet is one key barrier to the realisation of this digital education boom – a barrier that organisations like the not-for-profit Vodafone Foundation are trying to resolve for students living in refugee camps. Its Instant Network Schools project, piloted at Dadaab Refugee Camp in Kenya, provides a box full of connectivity hardware, power and digital educational content to set up ‘Instant Classrooms’ in these isolated communities.
The technology was developed by experts at Vodafone Foundation and is powered largely by Vodafone employee volunteers who are allowed paid charitable leave to support programme delivery. The project has seen better attendance at schools, improvements in exam results and increased ICT literacy. In fact, the technology behind the ‘Instant Classroom’ proved so popular that other organisations wanted to buy it, so the social enterprise, Vodafone Business Ventures, has been set up to channel profits back into Vodafone Foundation’s work.
We at Amphigean fully support initiatives like this which help schools in Africa have crucial access to learning content. As a result, we have given permission for our partner, the Vodafone Foundation, and its Instant Network Schools team to share a series of training videos we have produced for Vodafone Group and its associated Operating Companies, with disadvantaged primary and secondary schools. These videos provide informative but clear introductions to a range of technology-based themes, including mobile phone operations; connectivity; applications and network security.
The Vodafone Foundation is a UK registered charity and supports global initiatives that are primarily focused on projects that deliver public benefit through the application of technology across the areas of health, education and disaster relief. Instant Network Schools enables young refugees and teachers to access digital educational content and the internet, improving the quality of education in some of the most marginalised communities where Vodafone operates.
“When the Vodafone Foundation approached us, we were over the moon to assist, because it fits so well with our charitable objectives. We already support a great educational charity in Sierra Leone, EducAid. The work it does is amazing and it’s great to be a part of its success.Pete Simpson, Managing Director
The videos we’ve provided to the Foundation are part of our TechLite series which takes complex technical topics and simplifies them so that anyone can understand. They are typically 2 minutes in duration and so are perfect for the ‘Instant Network Schools’ programme. We’re looking forward to hear how they’ve been received.”
More information on Vodafone Foundation’s work in this area can be found here:
More information on EducAid Sierra Leone can be found here: